Interstate wine shipping possibly on its way back to Supreme Court

In the next few weeks it is expected that the Supreme Court will decide whether to grant certiorari to hear the appeal of the case of Siesta Village Market, LLC v. Steen, 595 F.3d 239 (5th Cir. 2010)The Siesta Village case was decided earlier this year by the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal which held that a Texas law which allows Texas retailers to ship wine directly to Texas consumers, but forbids out-of-state retailers from doing so, is constitutional and not a violation of the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution.  The plaintiff in the case, which represents the interests of a nationwide coalition of wine retailers, has argued that in the wake of the 2005 Supreme Court decision in Granholm v. Heald which held that states states may not favor in-state wineries in allowing their direct shipment of wine to consumers while forbidding direct shipment of wine to such same consumers by out-of-state wineries, similar laws favoring in-state wine retailers over out-of-state wine retailers should also be struck down.  The issue of direct shipment by retailers presents certain distinct legal nuances when compared with direct shipment by wineries, so it is possible the Supreme Court may decide to revisit the issue in this context.  This could be especially interesting in light of the change in composition of the Court since 2005.

Stay tuned ….

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